Amber Mangum most recently became a Christian, and like all new Christians, she wanted to learn all she could about Christ. So, what did she do? She read her Bible every spare minute– but was upset when her school wouldn’t allow her to read it during her free time.
Mangum said her daughter was reading her Bible on Sept. 14 when Vice Principal Jeanetta Rainey approached. According to Mangum and the lawsuit, Rainey told Amber that reading the Bible violated school policy and that she would face discipline if she continued to do so.
Later that day, Amber recounted the episode to Mangum, who is her adoptive mother and also her biological grandmother. James Baker, a family friend, sent a note to the school asking that the principal identify any policy barring students from reading the Bible during their free time.
The note quoted a section of the school system’s administrative procedures, saying that students “may read their Bibles or other scriptures, say grace before meals, and pray before tests to the same extent they may engage in comparable, non-disruptive activities.”
To me, you have to wonder what prompted someone who should know the policy to tell a falsehood to a child. Perhaps she was like other new converts and she was sharing her faith as well as reading? It’s usually the case that if someone is regular in their reading and a new Christian that they want to tell others.
It sounds like this Vice Principal was trying to silence her or stop her from being as devoted as it appears she was. In any case, the Rutherford institute has gotten involved, and came to the girl’s defense. And why shouldn’t they? It should not be a problem for someone to read a Bible (or for that matter, Koran, Mormon book, etc.) quietly on their own time!